GLOBAL PROGRAM LAUNCH CAPITALIZES ON EXPERIENTIAL BRANDING
Awell-known saying goes that you never get a second chance to make a first impression. In agrimarketing, the rule doubles for product launches. When the target is your most important global influencers, an introduction must hit the mark.
85 percent of the target reporting an increase in awareness
85 percent wanting to learn more about the program
After a focused development effort, Pharmacia Animal Health, Kalamazoo, Mich., was ready to introduce its Consistent Pork Program - a system that gives veterinarians and producers a new way to look at the effects of animal health on production variability.
A special event in conjunction with the 2002 International Pork Veterinary Society (IPVS) meeting was held in Ames, Iowa, to introduce the program to veterinarians.
Mike Minford, senior counselor for Morgan&Myers, Jefferson, Wis., adds, "We wanted the event to convey this, as well as serve as a platform for memorably communicating new messages about the Consistent Pork Program."
Guests were transported from their hotels to the Iowa State University Memorial Union site via chartered buses. Welcome signage and Pharmacia hosts greeted the guests and directed them to a pre-event cocktail reception.
"Following the reception, sliding doors opened to the Memorial Union's grand ballroom, which was the site of the banquet and program," Minford explains. "The focal point of the room was the stage with a large screen projection of the brand promise, flanked by banners on both sides. Guests were seated at candlelit tables while a jazz and swing band performed."
After a welcome from Johan Dreesen, global pork marketing manager for Pharmacia Animal Health, a one-minute multimedia presentation introduced the Consistent Pork Program theme. Being cognizant of the many nationalities represented, the presentation was translated into seven languages.
LIGHTS. CAMERA. ACTION.
The Consistent Pork Program focuses on opportunity costs, herd variation, diagnostics and responsible use of medical interventions - not the lightest of dinner topics. Yet Pharmacia wanted to pique veterinarians' interest and stimulate them to contact their representative to begin the first phase of the program.
"This original performance incorporated skits, humor and music that was relevant to our guests," Minford says. "The goal was for them to be equally entertained and informed."
Ninety-five percent of attendees reported event satisfaction. But, more importantly, Minford says, 85 percent reported that their awareness of the importance of consistency had increased. The same percentage said they intended to seek out more information about the program.
GLOBAL ROLLOUT CONTINUES
Since the event in June 2002, the program has been rolling out worldwide. The company continues to rely on the expertise of a handful of global third-party experts who were instrumental in the development of the Consistent Pork Program.
"Their scientific input, insight and feedback have been essential," Minford says. "To gain the most from their expertise, several tools were created to help reps and their customers understand and analyze production variation."
Those tools include:
A CD-ROM featuring expert presentations about the importance of and strategies for controlling variation;
Educational pieces, including Thought Leader Insights, addressing technical aspects; and
An interactive software tool to analyze where producers were losing money during the production process due to production variation.
The experts also have been involved in media relations efforts, which have resulted in feature articles being placed in major global pork publications.
"The receptivity of our Pharmacia colleagues and customers alike has been highly encouraging," Quinn says. "Several countries have launched the program locally, and success stories are beginning to appear. Others have plans to launch soon. Our global team continues to develop new tools to support the program and assist customers in further improving production consistency."
It's these ongoing, targeted efforts that Pharmacia is hoping will lead to further global acceptance of the Consistent Pork Program. AM